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Where do I start?: Choosing Topics

Focus on Your Discipline

There's a librarian for each department at Northwestern who creates guides that lead you to databases for individual disciplines. You should talk to yours.

What Should I Write About?

  • Choose a topic that interests you
  • Choose a topic scholars have written about (many research papers require that you cite scholarly sources)
  • Choose a topic appropriate to the length of your paper (if you find tons of articles it usually indicates you need to narrow your topic)
  • Ask for help--both your professors and library subject specialists are great resources to help narrow topics

Browsing for research paper topics

Browsing through articles may spark ideas for your paper, and it also will illustrate what topics will provide you with sources for your bibliographies.

A Wild Topic has appeared!